Last week, the Frenchtown School District responded to a federal Title IX lawsuit filed by the parents of a student who says she was sexually harassed by a Frenchtown music teacher. The district says it did not violate the student’s Title IX rights, and denies that district administrators were aware of prior allegations against the teacher, Troy Bashor. The response characterizes Superintendent Randy Cline’s statement in March 2017 defending the district’s handling of allegations against Bashor, which the Missoulian published as an opinion piece, as a “press release” that the paper chose to publish as an editorial.

The district’s defense is centered on its assertion that it had no knowledge of previous complaints against Bashor that are listed in the plaintiffs’ complaint. The district also refutes the claim that Cline’s op-ed, in discussing aspects of the district’s internal Title IX investigation, revealed confidential student investigation.

At a school board meeting in January, Cline’s contract was extended by an additional year past the two remaining on his current contract with Frenchtown. A pretrial conference in the civil suit has been set for March 8.

Previously on this story:

The country's top legal talent joins the Frenchtown Title IX suit
With Title IX case looming, Frenchtown School District seeks Troy Bashor's criminal justice file
Frenchtown teacher accused of sexual assault appears to be president-elect of the American Choral Directors Association’s Montana chapter

Staff Reporter

Susan Elizabeth Shepard lived in Missoula from 2008 to 2011 before returning in 2017 to work at the Independent. She is also a two-time resident of Austin, TX, and Portland, OR, with an interest in labor, music and sports. @susanelizabeth on Twitter.

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